11-11 Memories Retold 121118 CREDIT BFBS
Gaming

Battle Of Vimy Ridge Brought To Life In New Video Game

Called '11/11 Memories Retold', it has been produced by the makers of the Wallace and Gromit franchise, Aardman Animations.

11-11 Memories Retold 121118 CREDIT BFBS

The game draws on the events of April 1917, when over 10,000 Canadian soldiers were killed or wounded. (Picture: BANDAI NAMCO).

A computer game is exploring the effects of war through the eyes of two Great War soldiers. 

Called '11/11 Memories Retold', it has been produced by the makers of the 'Wallace and Gromit' franchise, Aardman Animations.

“11/11 Memories Retold is a narrative adventure game where you play the role of two non-combatant soldiers in World War One,” explains George Rowe – a senior producer at Aardman.

“It’s two guys from opposite sides of the war; you play a young Canadian photographer called Harry and a German engineer called Kurt, who both go to war for very different reasons.

"They end up getting trapped together [underground] at the end of the first act and getting caught in an unlikely friendship and then that friendship is tested through the real events of World War One… It really tries to tell a very human account of war.”

11 11 Memories Retold 121118 CREDIT BFBS
The games draws on accounts of actual First World War events (Picture: BANDAI NAMCO).

“The art style is subjective,” said Dan Efergan, who works as the company’s interactive group creative director.

“Everything is soft and it’s blurry to some degree. You’re trying to work out what things are, you’re trying to interpret them yourself.”

He explains that the game has been based on a number of real events:

"It's been pieced together from a number of very specific elements, postcards, pictures, letters and all the other ways that people were communicating their stories to each other.”

Set during the Battle of Vimy Ridge, the game draws on the events of April 1917, when over 10,000 Canadian soldiers were killed or wounded in one of the largest Allied advances of the conflict.

Vimy Ridge has been described as “Canada's most celebrated military victory” but to ensure that the game reflected historical reality without bias towards one side, two historians – one British and one German – were employed to advise Aardman during production.

An artist's impression of Vimy Ridge.

The game has even encouraged members of the production team to learn more about their own family histories:

“You can actually find my great-grandfather’s discharge papers from World War One as a collectable in the game which I found just randomly in a tube at my dad’s house,” said Mr Rowe.

“I think it’s quite nice, we as a development team kind of delved more into our family histories, just naturally through being involved with the subject matter so much.

"You start asking a bit more, finding out stuff that maybe you didn’t know about it.”